Wednesday, December 19, 2012

From the shelf: Fairy Tale Fail

Title: Fairy Tale Fail
Author: Mina V. Esguerra
Genre: Filipino Chick-Lit
Date read: December 18-19, 2012
Dawn Rates:  (4/5)

Summary (cr: goodreads)

Of all the twenty-something women who are hopeless romantics, Ellie Manuel is more “hopeless” than “romantic.”

Even after her Prince Charming broke up with her, she just won’t give up … because fairy tale heroines don’t live “happily ever after” right away, silly, they’re tested first!

Determined to pass the test, she spends the next year restoring herself to the girl Prince Charming had fallen in love with in the first place.

Until she discovers that life without him might not be so bad after all: her career is taking off, her confidence is back, and the cute guy at work is no longer a stranger.

So when is it okay to quit on a fairy tale?
My Review: (also in goodreads):

This was definitely a light read. I did breeze my way through it in an hour. Fairy Tale Fail encompasses THE standard one must have to have that happily ever after. Ellie wanted it so much that she had woven a reality where she thinks she MUST have in order to have the perfect life. Here comes perfect Don, the friend and her prince charming. She thought she had everything perfectly not until Mr. Prince Charming on his white horse crashed her dreams of happily ever after. Personally, I think she was only acting because of her wounded pride. I wanted to lecture her when the female protagonist kept on whining that her fairy tale has been ruined. Here comes Lucas, THE one-who-could-ruin-and-not-fit-into-my-fairy-tale-hunk and Ellie thinks she must stir away from him in order to concentrate on her plans in getting back Mr. Perfect. But sometimes plans could be ruined to pave for something better. 

Till the next read...

From the shelf: Reflected in You

Title: Reflected in You
Author: Sylvia Day
Genre: New Contemporary, Adult fiction
Date read: December 06-18, 2012
Dawn Rates:  (2/5)

Summary (cr: goodreads)

Gideon Cross. As beautiful and flawless on the outside as he was damaged and tormented on the inside. He was a bright, scorching flame that singed me with the darkest of pleasures. I couldn't stay away. I didn't want to. He was my addiction... my every desire... mine.

My past was as violent as his, and I was just as broken. We'd never work. It was too hard, too painful... except when it was perfect. Those moments when the driving hunger and desperate love were the most exquisite insanity.

We were bound by our need. And our passion would take us beyond our limits to the sweetest, sharpest edge of obsession...

My Review: (also in goodreads)

As promised, I gave this sequel a chance. Both Eva and Gideon clearly had a dysfunctional relationship. It took me about 2 weeks to finish this book and that isn't my style. Maybe because I was appalled at the scenes of the first half. I reluctantly read the scenes as if it was an obligatory read and skipped most of it. I know that the sex scenes were of great importance in this book since that is how they started but it seemed like that's all they have and the protagonists didn't even move on in that part of their relationship. The second part may be more personal and I feel for what Gideon had to do to keep Eva safe. I think that was sweet, to keep her at arms length just to keep her safe. With some of the dark cloud hanging above them gone, I am wishing for smooth sailing this time and a better ending to the Crossfire series, though I have qualms in reading the last installment of this trilogy.

Till the next read...

Friday, December 7, 2012

From the shelf: Bared to You

Title: Bared to You
Author: Sylvia Day
Genre: New Contemporary, Adult fiction
Date read: December 06, 2012
Dawn Rates:  (2.5/5)

Summary (cr: goodreads)

Gideon Cross came into my life like lightning in the darkness… 

He was beautiful and brilliant, jagged and white-hot. I was drawn to him as I’d never been to anything or anyone in my life. I craved his touch like a drug, even knowing it would weaken me. I was flawed and damaged, and he opened those cracks in me so easily…

Gideon knew. He had demons of his own. And we would become the mirrors that reflected each other’s most private wounds…and desires.The bonds of his love transformed me, even as i prayed that the torment of our pasts didn't tear us apart...
My Review: (also in goodreads)

I have experienced one Sylvia Day novel and it's "The Stranger I Married". To be honest, I started reading this book out of curiosity.  Let's just say I jumped into the bandwagon.

This was a classic 'I was attracted to you at first sight' moment. The tension and attraction was clearly present which I questioned a bit; merely of the fact that the female protagonist was obviously abnormally entranced. He was like a male siren, if there was even one. THE Mr. Dark and Dangerous the women desired. Eva was obviously smitten and sexually attracted to the stranger in the lobby. Then finding out that Mr. Dark and Dangerous is actually a muli-gazillionaire (no surprises there). 

What I didn't like is how Mr. Gideon Cross, no matter how hot or how sexually attractive he is, would blurt out something like that to a stranger. Heck if a stranger, even though he is the epitome of perfection would suddenly ask a personal intimate question, I will feel offended and repulsed. The graphic sex talk between them was horrifying that I skipped most of them. I know that they came from dark pasts that the relationship was new to them (another cliche) but initially their need for each other is for the flesh. The only consolation for me is Cary's friendship, Mark and Steven's witty lines and the burning question on what the heck happened in Gideon's past.

I actually read this book for the sake of reading and to know what the fuss is all about but since a friend of mine told me to read the second book of the series (which, according to her, was so much better), I think I would give it a try.

Till the next read (the next book probably)...

Thursday, December 6, 2012

From the shelf: Gabriel's Rapture

Title: Gabriel's Rapture
Author: Sylvain Reynard
Genre: Romance, Adult fiction
Type of book: e-book
Date read: December 05-06, 2012

Summary (cr: goodreads):
Professor Gabriel Emerson has embarked on a passionate, yet clandestine affair with his former student, Julia Mitchell. Sequestered on a romantic holiday in Italy, he tutors her in the sensual delights of the body and the raptures of sex. But when they return, their happiness is threatened by conspiring students, academic politics, and a jealous ex-lover. When Gabriel is confronted by the university administration, will he succumb to Dante's fate? Or will he fight to keep Julia, his Beatrice, forever? In Gabriel's Rapture, the brilliant sequel to the wildly successful debut novel, Gabriel's Inferno, Sylvain Reynard weaves an exquisite love story that will touch the reader's mind, body, and soul, forever.
My Review: (also in goodreads)

The sequel picks up where Gabriel's Inferno left off, the aftermath. The waiting and the longing in the first book was satisfied in the first few chapters. Everything is so perfect that time stood still for the lovers. And even the term 'sex god' not only surprised Gabriel but me as well. I was so amused that I almost fell off my chair laughing.

But of course since everything is so perfect there will come a time that they have to face the inevitable reality. Time to address everything in their past and hurdles in the present to pave the way for the possible future.

I find Julia quite stupid in the trial, seriously. I know that she's in love and wants to be on equal footing but sometimes emotions cloud rationality. Though Gabriel is such a knight in shining armor and that it's endearing and lovely, too much is sickening. Anger spoken in haste is regrettable and I do think that all of the things happening between the protagonists did benefit them. They needed the time-off to sort out everything and be together.

Too many emotions were drawn out while I was reading the book and I was carried away but it only means that it was a good read. Reading the Gabriel series and its references to literature felt like I was being re-acquainted again. I found out that there would be a final installment in the Gabriel series, and I can't hardly wait.

Love these Gabriel quotes:
"Julianne - my beloved is mine and I am hers.." 

"To my Beloved, My heart is yours and my body. My soul, likewise. I will be true to you, Beatrice. I want to be your last. Wait for me.."

“I’ll love you forever, Julianne, whether you love me or not. That’s my Heaven. And my Hell.”

“I want to be your first and your last. I love you, Julianne. I offer you my heart and my life. Marry me. Be my wife, my friend, my lover, and my guide. Be my blessed Beatrice and my adored Julianne.” His voice wavered slightly. “Say you’ll be mine. Forever.”

"Gabriel's Rapture" gets (5/5)

Can't wait for the final installment...
Till the next read...

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

From the shelf: Gabriel's Inferno

Title: Gabriel's Inferno
Author: Sylvain Reynard
Genre: Romance, Adult fiction
Type of book: e-book
Date read: December 02-05, 2012

Summary (cr: goodreads)
Enigmatic and sexy, Professor Gabriel Emerson is a well respected Dante specialist by day, but by night he devotes himself to an uninhibited life of pleasure. He uses his notorious good looks and sophisticated charm to gratify his every whim, but is secretly tortured by his dark past and consumed by the profound belief that he is beyond all hope of redemption. When the sweet and innocent Julia Mitchell enrolls as his graduate student, his attraction and mysterious connection to her not only jeopardizes his career, but sends him on a journey in which his past and his present collide. An intriguing and sinful exploration of seduction, forbidden love and redemption, "Gabriel's Inferno" is a captivating and wildly passionate tale of one man's escape from his own personal hell as he tries to earn the impossible...forgiveness and love.
My Review: (also in goodreads)

An author's attempts on introductions to familiarize one with the book can sometimes make or break a reader's interest and what gained mine? The first Dante class and THE question: "What's his problem?"

I see notable similarities to a well-loved trilogy of almost the same genre but of course this book has its own delightful taste.
One lovely similarity: First an Audi R8, now a Jaguar...these interesting male protagonists have fancy cars. ^^

One heartbreaking moment is when someone you care for secretly doesn't even remember anything when you kept the memory very dear. That is what I describe Gabriel and Julia's first encounter. But of course I find your jealousy endearing and somewhat amusing Mr. Gabriel Emerson. ^^

Though they obviously were in already in a relationship, the sexual tension is still there. I understand that they needed time to sort their personal problems and be truly honest with each other and their present circumstances won't allow them to be together (sort of) but I guess the cat and mouse chase in the relationship was dragging. I liked it better when they were busy hating each other in the first part. That is where the juicy 'uh-oh' and 'woah' moments are. But I also liked them together. And as secrets of a dark past start to unravel themselves, the protagonists get entangled into a more complicated but a justifiable relationship. See? I have a love/hate relationship with that part of the story.

Some say the wait leads to a satisfying reward. And as I dreaded and got frustrated with the cat and mouse chase, I honestly could say that the buildup that led to the fateful night was perfection. WOW~ I. CANT. EXPLAIN. Magical.

This book amused me to no end and I truly enjoyed every moment of it and because of you Mr. Gabriel Emerson, purple hyacinths and purple irises will never be the same again. I would definitely read the second book of the series.

"Gabriel's Inferno" gets (4/5)

“Being without you, Julianne, is like enduring an endless night without stars.” 
- Gabriel
Till the next read...

Sunday, December 2, 2012

From the shelf: Beautiful Redemption

Title: Beautiful Redemption
Author: Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Genre: YA, Paranormal, Romance, Witches
Date read: November 30-December 02, 2012
Dawn Rates:  (5/5)

Summary (cr: goodreads)

Is death the end . . . or only the beginning?

Ethan Wate always dreamed of leaving the stifling Southern town of Gatlin.

But he never dreamt that finding love with Lena Duchannes would drive him away. Lena is a Caster girl whose supernatural powers unveiled a secretive and cursed side of Gatlin, so powerful it forced him to make a terrible sacrifice.

Now Ethan must find a way to return to Lena - and Gatlin - as she vows to do whatever it takes to get him back. Even if it means trusting old enemies or risking their loved ones' lives.

Can Ethan and Lena rewrite their fate and their spellbinding love story in this stunning finale to the Beautiful Creatures series?

My Review: (also in goodreads)

After Beautiful Creatures, Beautiful Darkness, Beautiful Chaos and just when you thought that everything ended gravely at Beautiful Chaos, here comes the last installment of the Caster Chronicles.

With the circumstances at hand, we finally read the story in Lena's point of view. It seemed that Lena is convincing herself that everything is normal but the inevitable truth is its not.

Just when I thought everything was revealed at the third book, this final installment was like the thread that holds everything together. These revelations satisfied every question and every doubt I had in the first three books.

I love how the book is fast-paced I would definitely recommend everyone to read the series. This is the perfect ending for the Caster Chronicles and I couldn't have asked for more.

"A Seer’s moons, a Siren’s tears,
Nineteen Mortal, Wayward fears,
Incubus graves and Caster rivers,
The Final Page the End delivers."

Till the next read...
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